|Government House is a declared monument under the Antiquities and Monuments Ordinance. It is now used as a venue for the Chief Executive and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government to hold important official functions, such as official banquets in honour of visiting Heads of State/Government, and the Honours and Awards Presentation Ceremony.|
The Garden of Government House is open four times a year for public visits. The Ballroom is reserved on three Fridays in a month for local charitable, non-profit making or public organisations for holding events that are of benefit to the community.
Government House was formerly the official residence and office of 25 of Hong Kong's 28 Governors. Construction works started in 1851, eight years after Hong Kong was declared a British colony, and took four years to complete.
Over the years, Government House has undergone many changes to its original design. In 1891, a new annex was constructed on the eastern side of the House to give more space for social functions. This is where the Ballroom now stands.
During the Japanese occupation from 1941 to 1945, many parts of the House were renovated, including the building of a dominant central tower, which remains a prominent feature of this historical building, catching attention of visitors and tourists. Some Governors also carried out alterations to suit their style and needs.
The mixture of the architectural changes has given a special character to Government House, and every change gives a layer to its history.
Government House sits on Upper Albert Road, Central. Its main entrance faces south towards the Victoria Peak. Down on the northern side is the Central Government Offices where most Government Secretariat offices are located.
Government House has a front lawn and a back garden. Prominent among the plants in the garden are the many azaleas that come to full bloom in spring. Inside, the Ballroom, the Drawing Room, the Dining Room and the Conference Room are frequently used for receiving guests at official functions.
Government House of HK appears on the following banknote(s):